|Fitness professionals respond to Coca-Cola's new ads addressing its role in the obesity epidemic. (2013 YouTube, LLC) |
After Coca-Cola launched a TV campaign that calls on consumers to cut calories from their diet to curb obesity, fitness experts respond -- with mixed opinions.
Two ads debuted in the US earlier this month, with one focusing on the public health debate that blames the rising obesity rates on the empty calories found in sugary soft drinks and juices. The second ad, "Be OK," encourages viewers to "have fun" burning off excess calories.
What does the health and fitness world have to say? The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association, an international fitness trade organization, released feedback from some of its 10,000 members on Thursday.
"To me, my first impression was the ad is great because it is creating more conversation on physical activity and the obesity epidemic," said Jessica Matthews, exercise physiologist at the American Council on Exercise. "If something like [this] brings attention to these areas, no matter how they do it, I believe it is a positive thing."
"The ad is brilliant," adds Shana Martin, fitness director at Supreme Health and Fitness in Madison, Wisconsin. "Anything we can do to explain what a calorie is, how to burn it ... As fitness professionals it is easy to understand, but I think many people don't understand."
"I am not a medical researcher but in my own experience I don't think diet or regular [soda] is the problem," counters Karen Lankford, a director at El Gacho Fitness, Swim, & Racquet Club in Santa Fe. "The news is all about the amount of sugar, but caffeine and carbonation are just not good for you."
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